SA BLOCKS CECH FROM COMPTROLLER SEAT
The name of the next Student Association comptroller remains undetermined after nominee Emily Cech was shot down for the position on Wednesday.
After over an hour of debate in executive session, Cech’s appointment was rejected by the over half of the SA senate in a 29-12-2 vote.
Three days after the failed confirmation, the SA board of finance decided to keep provisional office control. Before deciding to next appointment, the board will seek senatorial feedback about the nomination failure.
“Whenever you make a decision, you want to make sure that it’s the best decision you can possibly make,” said SA President Felix Abreu. “So, despite the fact that the process has been so long, the main issue here is that if we didn’t have an interim comptroller, there would be a bigger problem.”
In order to be confirmed, the next candidate will need to take a two-thirds vote from the senate. Cech failed to reach 71 percent of the senate, resulting in the appointment’s landslide defeat.
During debate, SA members opposed to the confirmation were reportedly concerned with Cech’s preparedness for the position. The Albany Student Press was unable to confirm these reports at press time.
Before executive session broke out, Cech was grilled with questions concerning her availability, experience, and familiarity with SA operations.
Cech, a junior majoring in accounting and finance, cited her experience to the senate as a finance intern for Goodwill Industries.
“I came in with the drive to take this position,” Cech said.
Along with mentioning her history working in finance, taking 13 credits this semester, Cech said that her availability would comply with comptroller duties.
SA comptrollers are required to maintain frequent communication with student groups and the office of student involvement. Because of the position’s workload, Alex Schindler, deputy comptroller, declined interest in temporarily managing the department back in early October.
While questioning the candidate’s time management and credentials, senators broke parliamentary procedure several times by interrupting the candidate and breaking out into discussion without consent.
“I think people were very passionate about this particular bill, and in life when people get passionate about something they forget procedure,” said Austin Ostro, vice chair of the senate and head of the board of finance.
Following long-standing comptroller Robert Warshauer’s Oct. 12 resignation, the board of finance opened up applications for a permanent officer on MyInvolvement after appointing Nikash Nanavaty as interim comptroller.
Over two weeks, the board landed on four candidates to take Warshauer’s seat. The pool of candidates narrowed on Oct. 30 when the board chose to appoint Cech in a 5-2 vote.
Melissa Mosby, senator-at-large and member of the board of finance, was impressed by Cech’s initial interview. She believes that Cech was shot down because of the candidate’s lack of affiliation with Phi Alpha Delta, a pre-law fraternity with membership encompassing part of senate.
Despite opposition, Mosby plans to continue advocating for Cech to take reign of the comptroller’s office.
“Emily will be the new comptroller and that’s all I really have to say about that,” Mosby said.
While the board focuses on pushing an appointment through the senate, Nanavaty continues to take reign over the office.
Nanavaty has continued to receive deputy comptroller compensation despite facing the same workload as Warshauer. Being the highest paid position in SA alongside the president ($6,950 per year), permanent comptrollers receive nearly triple the amount of what deputy comptrollers make.
“The money wasn’t really a concern for me,” Nanavaty said. “I’m just here to step in and do as much as I can and I think I did.”